1 April 2024

To the Beginning! And an End...

Base image by dsdkcgl via Pixabay

Welcome to April! Yes, Spring is in the air and new beginnings abound.

Some months ago I was approached to contribute to a series Crimewriter Penny Grubb was facilitating on aspects of writing fiction, to be showcased on the Hornsea Writers webpage as Extracts From... 

Oh gosh, where to start when every aspect is interconnected? And there it was, staring at me: start at the beginning. 

Choosing two of my novels, a HistRom and a Horror, I explain why the openings are constructed the same way, yet are very different, in order to convey information a reader needs to settle into the fiction. Follow my pointer to read Extracts From... 

In other news, across on the Medium platform, my own non-fiction series about Stonehenge through the ages is finally drawing to a close with parts 6, moving from the Neolithic into the Bronze Age, and 7, jumping to the 20th century, how Stonehenge was nearly lost to ineptitude. So much for it being a short series of four! I'll add in the link to No 6 when it's live. And here it is: Stonehenge #6: Of Cursuses and Barrows.

And that's it from me. Enjoy the sunshine - if it ever deigns to put in an appearance for more than half an hour at a stretch.

1 March 2024

Where does the time go? It's certainly not Snail-paced.

Wood carving by unknown artist, Stanton Country Park, Wiltshire. (c) Linda Acaster

What happened to January and February? Apart from the eight weeks being lost to grey skies, rain and flooded roads, that is. 

This is the problem with more temperate UK winters. With a lack of snow in East Yorkshire it is all so dowly, damp and depressing, not helped at all by needing to be careful where we fix the central heating thermostat if we want to afford a holiday this coming summer. If it comes. Hey ho.

I have been trying to lift spirits, my own included, by writing articles on Medium. The header image is from the latest following a challenge regarding Statues. Some might be pedantic and say a wood carving isn't a statue, but that's being... pedantic. 

On holiday a couple of years ago, as evening drew in, we were following a meandering woodland path which unexpectedly opened into a dell hosting a fantastic selection of artworks. You can read the short article HERE.

I've been continuing the series I started late last year on the development of Stonehenge from a simple enclosure henge to the historical attraction it is today. It has turned into far more work than I anticipated. Fascinating, though.

I've just embarked on a Canva course for novelists. Well, I do need a new header for this website, and a few promo images for the novels wouldn't go amiss. Be prepared to see some pretty wonky offerings next month.

Enjoy your reading!

1 January 2024

Of Health, Happiness and Reading

And a Happy New Year to you! 

I trust you enjoyed the end-of-year Festivities and are now feeling both replete and wide-eyed for the forthcoming year. Dry January, is it?

Well, not here, at least not yet. We are a family which believes in the full ‘twelve days of Christmas’, even if it is more a midwinter celebration of Eat, Drink and Make Merry. There are malts and mince pies still to be sampled, even if the decorated fruit cake is down to a quarter of its size.

These first six days have been restful, with walks and visits and generally hanging out. I’ve read two non-fiction books; not at all my usual Christmas relaxation.

The Strange Death of Europe by Douglas Murray gives an interesting account of the close history of Europe and its near neighbours, much of which I’d either missed or forgotten. Published in 2017, it has proven rather too prescient.

The other non-fiction I picked up as a new pdf following a YouTube discussion with Professor David Anderson, Vitamin D and the Great Biology Reset, written with Dr David Grimes.

As past readers of this blog might recall, or check out the right-hand column, for some years I’ve been in the grips of sub-clinical Hashimoto’s Hypothyroidism, a debilitating autoimmune disorder (there again, please let me know which autoimmune disorder isn’t debilitating). Faced with the NHS wanting to wait until I fell within its ‘crisis management’ strategy, I began to research the condition, and seriously suspect its trigger was a long-standing Vitamin D deficiency, flagged when I discovered I could purchase blood tests the NHS refuse to allow.

Ever since, I keep half an eye out for anything Vitamin D related, from anecdotal (Health Unlocked is an excellent resource) to books, academic papers, and online discussions.

Have I learned anything new from Professor Anderson and Dr Grimes? Oh, yes. I knew that Vitamin D receptors are found in nearly every cell type in the body, therefore Vitamin D has to be important to its function, but I had no idea that it reads up to 3% of our entire genome, provided there is not a shortage of activated Vitamin D.

It puts into perspective the January 2021 call to Parliament by David Davis MP regarding the importance of using Vitamin D in combating Covid-19. If anyone wishes to watch the YouTube video they will see David Davis, an ex microbiologist, contemptuously fobbed off by a member of the Health Ministry. Prof Anderson & Dr Grimes are far more castigating about the concerted suppression of Vitamin D use in a largely deficient and insufficient population, in favour of expensive, experimental, gene therapies branded as “vaccines”.

Hey ho.

In the final six days of Christmas I am now embarking upon, my reading is scheduled to be much lighter, merely love and death during World War II - LOL! I have snaffled an advance copy of Sylvia Broady’s The Gunner Girls due for publication in February, and currently on offer as a pre-order ebook.

Right, that’s your lot. I’m due on the beach for the annual New Year’s Noon Swim.  

No, I’ll just be cheering them on.

Happy New Year!